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  CSPAN    Public Affairs    News  News/Business.  

    January 1, 2013
    5:00 - 8:00pm EST  

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the original stimulus money went to the banks, and the banks would not lend, so everybody suffered. then george bush gave everyone a stimulus in their hand, they went to walmart to spend it, and the chinese still got it. then, the businesses that do have money, they are not making jobs. they are investing in hedge funds and credit default swaps. guest: the best example of failed stimulus, and this is both under republicans and democrats, just clinging to a life raft, -- biggest gave all of this money to banks, and they
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stopped the landing, because a lot of this was due to reckless lending. and of course, not only do you have banks sitting on the sidelines, but of course any company that has cash sitting on the sidelines, it is a turbulent economy, and it would be reckless to do anything because you do not know what is going to happen, and the same applies for the lack of clarity on taxes for the next year. it is the wise thing to do, to sit on cash and conserve it because you do not know what your tax bill is going to be, you do not know how much longer
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your economy is going to be in disastrous shape. host: "the hill" is reporting this with house gop setting a 1:00 p.m. conference meeting. we are learning that house gop rank-and-file will gather for a conference meeting. boy, would you like to the inside of that conference meeting. guest: indeed, but my hunch is it will not be a raucous affair. i would assume speaker boehner would have a hands-off approach, and say, "guys, i did my best, this came down the pike, we try to come up with the deal, and not get it done." his own caucus would not support it.
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we should have realized that was the danger. at the time, speaker boehner said to the president and harry reid, the senate needs to send something our way, and we will deal with it. i thought it was a humble and honest approach. now, they got it, and i do not think they're going to like it. host: again, the house comes into session around noon eastern time. keep your television on c-span as we continue our coverage of the so-called fiscal cliff. tactically, we went over the -- technically, we went over the cliff, but all reports are if this deal is approved by the house, they could retroactively fixed the tax hikes, and also before the sequestration or automatic spending cuts kick in wednesday, the have another day to deal with that as well. guest: nothing means anything around here. they can legislate things backward and forward, and make sure nobody feels any pain. it is incredible.
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host: a couple of more phone calls for charles hurt. mary. in mississippi, republican caller. caller: i would like to point out to all of the democrats that are appeased this morning that he raised taxes on the rich, that all he has really done it is fed you a line because when he refuses to do away with the loopholes, and make the tax is fair, i mean, that is how they get away with not paying taxes -- although loopholes. basically, he has played to both sides. guest: it was said the problem with socialism is you run out of other people's money. again, that is what president obama told us yesterday -- we will run out of other people's money by what is now this year,
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and he will head to go back to the well, and lower the threshold for texas. -- taxes. i was thinking, greta, what would be a great idea -- currently there is no tax on political campaigns, but a wonderful incentive to make the tax code more fair is if they levied a tax on political campaigns. after all, they usually raise many millions of dollars. it is a million-dollar company. whatever the tax rate is, the highest tax rate for some succor of their making money, -- sucker out there making money, apply that to political campaigns, so they not only have to raise the money for the campaigns, but also the 39% tax. i do not know what you would do
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with that money, maybe directly to deficit reduction, but i think it would be a nice incentive. host: we should note that while the house is coming in at noon and it could vote as early as 1:00 p.m. today, the senator did not get -- the senate did not go home after building this -- voting earlier this morning. harry reid said the senate will be coming in at 2:00 p.m. eastern time today. what is going on? guest: i do not know. i had not thought about that. usually, when these sneaky deals come together, usually you do not have worst trading in the -- horsetrading in the house that would require it to come back to the senate. i would be surprised if that
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happened, partly because however much speaker boehner might not like the bill, and his caucus might not like the bill, i think it is so painful and awful that they would rather just have votes on the things. if it failed, that would be interesting. i do not think it will. the size of the vote in the senate this morning, and the fact that republicans would not even go along with a much better deal for them, i just did not see how they come up with something alternative or any amendments. host: that have to go back to the senate. if that happens, turned to c- span2.
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rose, jamestown. independent. caller: i think we should follow suit with for the as far as drug testing for the welfare people, and i worked for an aerospace company for 35 years, and they sent a lot of jobs to india, mexico and whenever, and if we started keeping those jobs here, at least some of those people would have worked -- have worked. also, the drug testing would get rid of a lot of people on welfare. guest: if you did take 535 people out of the phone book to solve these problems, an idea like the one rose just mentioned would overwhelmingly passed with 75%. it is an idea that will never gain traction here because you have politicians that do not
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want to be perceived as rough on the poor, or anything like it, even though actually doing drug testing might help a lot of them, and help them seek help and get off of drugs, maybe. that might be a positive step in their lives, personally, but that will never happen because of the nature of politicians, especially in this town. they do not want to be perceived as, you know, people who want to be tough on the port. host: charles hurt, with "the washington times." thank you. guest: my pleasure. >> the conversation continuing about the legislation going through capitol hill right now to deal with the fiscal clef,
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making its way through the house, the deal in question includes a return to the clinton era tax rates for families making more than four hundred $50,000 and individuals making more than $400,000. joe biden is meeting with house democrats. the vast majority of them seem ready to support the measure making its way through the house. with the new congress coming in on thursday, if the measure is not passed within that time, it will have to be completely reintroduced in the new congress. republicans are said to me in about five minutes to continue a discussion about whether or not to support the measure that was sent to them by the senate in the early morning hours. some tweaks coming from reporters in the halls of the capital. the political wire says democratic leaders say they will
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not take up a bill if it is amended by house republicans. "we are done. " a retweet from joe biden says "i think we are going to be fine." a number of different views and issues depending on which party is talking about the fiscal clef. we are going to, of course, keep you updated on the c-span network. in the meantime, take a look back at what senator dick durbin had to say earlier today from the senate floor. >> it was after 2:00 a.m. this morning when the senate finally passed this historic measure, which puts the fiscal cliff behind us, if the house of
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representatives passes it as well. i hope they take it up today and pass it with the same bipartisan spirit we saw in the senate today. it was a significant vote and emotional for several reasons. several of our colleagues were casting their final vote as a united states senators. we wish them the best. it was also a vote of high emotion because i cannot think of another vote in recent time the american people followed so closely. i cannot think of a time i have been on an airplane or a restaurant without somebody coming up to me in asking what was going to happen. they were concerned, as they
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should have been. this has finally mobilized on a bipartisan basis a majority to pass this measure in the senate. the president has shown extraordinary leadership on this. he thought about a long and hard, left his family vacation to come back to washington and try to put together a solution to this fiscal crisis. he was successful in the senate, and i hope he will be in the house as well. he had the able efforts of his vice president joe biden as well to help temper -- help him. last night, joe biden came to his home, the united states senate, where he served for 36 years, and spoke to democrats about the importance of this vote. it was almost an hour and a half on new year's eve, almost
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surreal, as we gathered for this important vote. for an hour and a half we've spoken to the vice president and express our feelings. in the end, all but three of the democratic senators who voted in favor of this measure. there are parts that many of us disagree with, even today, but we understand that is the nature of compromise, the part of what you have to except -- accept may not be popular with you, but you have to compromise to solve problems. when we look of the issues before us, i think we made significant progress. the most important issue was to protect 99% of american families from any tax increase. if the measure is approved in the house, we will see 99% of
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families bear the tax increase today. the vast majority of working families, -- stared a tax increase today. the vast majority of working families struggle. they work paycheck to paycheck. a recent survey asked a basic question. if an emergency came up, could you vined -- could you find two thousand dollars to meet an emergency need? to belsen dollars is not an extraordinary amount of -- $2,000 is not an extraordinary amount of money. barely half of american families have access to two thousand dollars. that tells you how close to the edge so many families live. had we not acted on this measure early this morning, these middle-income families would have faced an increase in their
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taxes of more than $2,000 a year. that is across the nation. we had to come together to protect those families. that is the starting point for the president's position on this issue and the starting point for the democrats. we passed six months ago in this chamber a measure which would have protected these families. we sent it to the house. they never called it. we had to renew our efforts last night and we were able to achieve that by the end of the evening. we had to bargain, as usual, and the political atmosphere, and had to raise the exemption from two hundred $50,000 -- $250,0002 to $450,000, but in so doing,
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we have protected these families. that was the important for step in this package that we passed early this morning. the other thing that was part of it was a five-year extension on the earned income tax credit. the earned income tax credit was passed during the reagan ministration. it said we would give working families a tax benefit for working, earned income tax credit. that was probably the best way to reduce poverty in our nation. the earned income tax credit has been extended for five years. the child tax credit, which says to families with children, we will give you a tax credit to help you raise those children, that too was renewed for five
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years, and we have a provision to help working families pay for college education. that too was included in this measure. from the working family perspective, there were many good and important elements included in this measure. we also considered a lot of other tax measures, some of which i liked and some of which i did not. one of them in particular, the estate tax, is widely misunderstood. this is a tax-cut applies -- a tax that applies to a very small fraction of american families. when the breadwinner passes away, the estate is subject to taxation. some 3% might be affected by the estate tax. at the higher levels we have discussed in our debate on this issue, less than 1% of the
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states and of paying a tax of any kind to the government. we would raise the exemption to the states over $5 million. over that amount, it would be subject to a 40% tax responsibility. i personally think it should have been a lower figure. we are dealing with the wealthiest people in america. many of them make estate planning to avoid this tax throughout their lives. it turns out of fewer than one- half of 1% of those that use this benefit are wealthy farmers. a friend of mine in illinois started with very modest means,
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bought some land, and over time the land has mushroomed in value to the point where his estate is worth multimillionaire's of dollars. she will have an estate that is huge, and she is subject to this tax. she is not a farmer. i do not think she has ever been on a tractor. it is an asset which would be subject to the estate tax. we reached an agreement, albeit reluctant agreement, to establish the state tax exemption of $5.1 million, subject to attacks beyond that of 40%. there are many other provisions related to the tax code, but that was an important start, protecting working families, protecting the deductions they need the most, and making sure we have revenue coming in from this. we anticipate $600 billion in
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new revenue coming in to help reduce our deficit. we also have the alternative minimum tax. there was a time when they took a look at america and say how could possibly be that some of the wealthiest people pay no taxes? we established an alternative minimum tax which said that even if under the regular tax code you escape all liability, you will pay something. it was not a bad idea 34 years ago when the debate started, but because we did not index the income associated with it, over the years, the alternative minimum tax hit not only the wealthy, but started hitting those in middle income categories, so each year we had to postpone the input -- impact of this tax on those families. this has been vexing us for
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decades. last night in the senate -- or this morning in the senate with the passing of this legislation, we have dealt with this problem once and for all. we have a permanent fix on the alternative minimum tax. it is something most american families are probably puzzled over, but getting this behind us was critically important. we also managed to extend the dock fix. we were reducing the cost of medicare and we had a great idea, but when it came to imposing the law, doctors and hospitals pushed back and said wait a minute, we need this compensation. therefore, we postponed it. every year we postponed, we had
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to come up with it from other sources. it is another one like field her native -- it is another one like the alternative minimum tax that has haunted us year in and year out. otherwise, what would have happened is, starting today, doctors and hospitals would have seen a reduction in their reimbursement by 20%. across the nation, many doctors and hospitals would have said we no longer can afford to treat these patients, and the americans who depend on medicare would have had fewer choices for treatment. we have resolved this for one year. another thing we have done that is critically important is extend unemployment benefits for
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one year. two million americans would have lost their unemployment benefits this morning as a result of this fiscal cliff if we had not taken action. it means an awful lot in illinois. we have literally tens of thousands in my own state that face the same basic problem. these are people who have been out of work for a long time. some are in school. some are taking courses for retraining. all are trying to keep their family together, not lose their home while their unemployed. -- they are unemployed. this was the president's second highest priority and it was included in this package. review ask the congressional budget office where to spend $1
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to help the economy, they will be clear that it is unemployment benefits. the dollar you spend on unemployment benefits go back into the economy. they are spending it on goods and services to get by, utility bills, rent, mortgage payments, food, clothing, the basics of life. each dollar has a multiplier effect. it is $1.60 ultimately into the economy. it is not only the humane and right thing to do for a struggling economy, but a good thing for boosting economic growth. one of the real disappointments last night, and i have to tell you, it really is sad that it has come to this, relates to the farm bill. we have the chairman of the agriculture committee in the senate, senator debbie saginaw
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of michigan. she has done an extraordinary job. her leadership in constructing a farm bill this year really was masterful. i have been around congress for 30 years, house and senate. you can pick out the real legislators, and she is one. she sat down and crafted a farm bill. now, you may not think of michigan as a farm state. it is. she looked at this bill in terms of its entirety. in its entirety, it is about more than farmers and ranchers. it is about nutrition, food programs, school lunches, food stamps. they are all included in this bill. she crafted it with the ranking republican, pat roberts of kansas. she had 53 votes in the senate for this bill, bipartisan support. it not only had the support of
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every major farm organization, which is no mean feat, it save $23 billion in deficit reduction in five years. she went after some of the indefensible programs, like the direct payment program to farmers, which they readily knowledge needed to go way, took those programs aside and put the money to deficit reduction. she went to nutrition programs, which are critically important to families facing income inequality, and she protected those. those are important to me, and i worked with her, and we came up with an honest, balanced approach. we pass the bill. we pass it months ago. we sent it to the house of representatives. they not only could not pass their own farm bill, they would not consider calling the
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bipartisan senate bill. farmers were calling them and begging them to college. they never did it. there was a lot of frustration over here that we did good work on a bill. the house would not put the bill on the floor. they never brought it up. it turns out that under the law, if you do not pass a new farm bill, you revert to the 1949 farm bill. talk about going back in history in picking up a law that has little application to today's world. that is what happened. last night, i bid farewell to senator herb kohl of wisconsin. i am going to miss him more than most people can imagine, because herb kohl spend the time and understood america's dairy program. madam president, i confess, i do
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not understand this program. i used to go with dairy issues to senator kohl. wisconsin. farmers spent illinois dairy farmers -- wisconsin dairy farmers and illinois dairy farmers always saw eye to eye. we found out that if we reverted to the 1949 dairy program, the price of milk would double to $10 per gallon. that, to me, was unacceptable, and was unacceptable to the white house. we had to come up with an emergency measure to avoid this. we should have taken up the bipartisan bill. and i will say one thing that really disappointed me last night. at the last minute, they had one
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aspect that they really needed to take care of. it cost $60 million-$100 million. we had to find a way to pay for it. the other side of the aisle insisted that we pay for it with money from the federal food stamp program. that is just sad. the fact if they would turn the federal food stamp program, this now program, to come up with this money, is really difficult to understand, explain or defend. i'm really saddened by that. so what we did in the early morning hours is important for us. it is not the end of the story. there is more we will face. in 60 days, we're going to face another quiff of our own making -- clef -- cliff of our own
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making. when we spend money, we are $0.40 for every dollar we spend. every -- barrault $0.40 for every dollar we spend. borrow $0.40 for every dollar we spend. the debt ceiling has never been an issue, but now has become a political issue. the continuing resolution, our temporary spending bill expires. sequestration kagan, automatic spending cuts. we will have in 60 days, if the house follows the senate lead on
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the fiscal cliff, another challenge. let's hope we of learned a lesson from this one. the american people are sick and tired of incompetence, political posturing, and the failure of congress to come together to solve problems on a bipartisan basis. we need to move forward. in the early mornings, the senate achieved that. should have been long ago, i understand ag, but we achieve this. i hope we can now approach this in a sober, honest, mature way. i took a look of the specific impact of this morning's vote on my state. 5 million families will be scared a tax increase, almost all of them the working families are described earlier. without an agreement, the
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average family would have faced an increase in taxes of more than $2,000. half a million families in my state will continue to receive college tuition tax credits, as much as $1,000 of assistance each year, which i am sure is a helping hand. families raising children will continue to benefit from the child tax credit, a yearly savings of about $1,000 on average. nearly a quarter of a million families benefited from the early in pumps -- from the earned income tax credit last year. thousands of illinois children will continue to have access to school readiness programs like head start. low-income families will
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continue to benefit from home energy programs. the bill continues funding for women infants and children, prenatal care so the week and have healthy babies and healthy moms. disabled veterans will continue to receive housing assistance. over 88,000 people in illinois will continue to receive unemployment benefits, and benefits -- businesses will benefit from consumer spending at a time when we desperately needed in our economy. let me say one last word. this is not a deficit reduction major. it does reduce it in some aspects, but the arcane scoring by the congressional budget office will not give us any credit toward deficit reduction.
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having said that, we still of the deficit issue. we still have a deficit problem. what we tried to establish this morning in this vote, revenue has to be part of the solution. the other side of the aisle reluctantly, after years of resisting, came to our side on this problem. number two, we need to look in entitlements. here is what the facts are. social security can make every promise of payment for 20 years. you cannot say that about any other federal program. on the 21st year, there will be a drop-off of 30% in terms of social security benefits. so, we of 20 years. we can wait to do something, or we can do something soon, maybe even this year, 2013. that is what i would like to see. i am preparing legislation which
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will call for the creation of a commission with a simple assignment, come up with a plan for a 75 year solvency of social security. when you haven't and it has been certified to be a valid plan, -- have its and it has been certified to be a valid plan, bring it to congress where it can be passed without a filibuster. to haveve this chance this debate to make sure we have solvency for social security, that will affect not only our lives, but the lives of our children and beyond. that is the responsible thing to do. medicare goes broken 12 years. why? because lo and behold, today, 10,000 americans reached the age of 65. 10,000 reached that age yesterday, tomorrow, and for the next 18 years.
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the baby boomers have arrived. we knew it was coming, but as they show up, their demand for services that they paid for and invested in throughout their working lives will continue to grow. those people who say there is too much government spending, are you going to say to the millions of americans who paid into social security and medicare for a lifetime that we are going to walk away from our obligations? of course not. "we have to do is find a way to meet this growing population. there are ways to do it, and humane ways to do it, to save money and protect the future of social security and medicare. i think the affordable health care act is a step in that direction. >> that was senator dick durbin
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from earlier today. that is a live picture of the u.s. capitol. the light in the bell tower means that congress is in session. the senate is back in session, on the floor talking about a filibuster rules. the house is on recess, waiting to potentially come back and vote and debate on fiscal clef legislation, the same legislation perhaps, voted on early this morning by the senate. as we continue our live coverage here on this first day of 2013, we want to get your reaction to what is happening on capitol hill. you can see the numbers there on your screen. you can also send in a comment the a twitter.
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if you want to continue this conversation on line, you can go to facebook. you can add to the comments they're being made every minute. we want to start with an article that came out. i will read just a little bit of this. house conservatives threatened to kill fiscal cliff deal. that is the headline on this article. house republicans are in conference. we're hoping the leadership will come out afterward. if they do, we will bring you that press conference. in this article, it says that less than 12 hours after senate majority leader mitchell and a a -- senate minority leader mitch mcconnell marshaled the votes,
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the deal appealed squash by a revolt led by eric cantor. although his remarks were brief, they sent shock waves through his conference, which was already extremely skeptical of the agreement, and perhaps looking for a leader. conservative opposition to the agreement stems from a host of issues, including that the deal does not include any spending cuts, would significantly add to the deficit and raise taxes on those making more than $400,000 a year. while the republicans were meeting earlier today, the congressional budget office came out with its scoring of the bill passed by the senate.
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another four dollars trillion in deficit spending is what they scored its ad for the next nine years, about $330 billion in additional spending. the senate did not pass any spending cuts. those were pushed down for about two months. that is where we stand now, waiting for the house to come back into session. waiting for the house conference to come back from their meeting. perhaps the leadership will speak to the press. we're ready for that. we spoke to our reporter who said that even if the house does consider legislation tonight, it still has to go through the rules committee. we have a crew on standby for the rules committee as well. a lot of the information we are getting today is coming from our capitol hill producer who has been celebrating new year's eve and new year's day with the congress.
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it is time to hear your voice is now. we want to hear your reaction to what is going on in washington. we will begin with judith, a democrat from california. caller: i have been relegated to the sofa. i was hit by a drunk driver in september of 2011. i have been watching c-span quite a bit. i see the republican leader mitch mcconnell as having so much power, daryl eisa and eric cantor following. it is like they are the face of the republican party. hearing their comments and watching them in action, i think these guys are really hard to deal with. anyway, i think they are the fly in the buttermilk. host: abc's jonathan carl, who has been a capitol hill producer
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for several years and is now going to be the new white house correspondent for abc is up on capitol hill following this. here is a tweed he just sent out. that is from a senate democratic leadership aide according to jonathan carl of abc news. james in new hampshire republican line. caller: happy new year. i am a republican died in the wall, but what i will say is both parties -- i don't know which one started disappearing -- started it and i don't care, why do they let it go to the last second? i am craig said every one of them. my congressman bass -- i am
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crazed at every one of them. my congressman bass, they got he got kicked out. all they are doing tonight is fixing unemployment, farms, and all that stuff, which needs to be done, and in two months we're going to be right back in the same spot. they should pass this tonight and then get three days off, and then all they should be doing is dealing with this negs debt ceiling -- next debt ceiling and the price of things. and that is all they have to do. host: they only have about 35 hours left in this congress before the 113th congress comes
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in on thursday. there will be new members coming in on thursday, as so if this congress is going to act, it has to act in 35 hours. harry is an independent in baltimore, maryland. caller: a couple of comments. the democratic process has been entirely distorted by the filibuster in the senate and minority rule in the house. we spent trillions of dollars to bring democracy to the middle east and what we got is marcy and we hate it. we hated here too. millionaires and mitt romney get a pass.
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they only pay social security on a little of their income. the last debt limit cost taxpayers $25 million because we have to pay interest to banks we still give loans to for free. what i would like to see is entitlement reform. if you are retired from congress and you are a millionaire, you do not get a pension. you do not get health care. if you go to work as a lobbyist, you do not get a pension either. that is the entitlement reform i would like to see. >> a little bit more from the article that just came out on line. according to one republican in the conference room, kantor went robe on the messaging and clearly his colleagues and leadership by surprise with his
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decision to come out against the bill. technically, the agreement was not yet dead, but boehner's control of this congress is practically nonexistent at this point and there is virtually no chance he can marshal the 120 republicans he insists he needs. tweets are fast and furious.
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host: next call comes from rick in point pleasant, was to virginia. a democrat. caller: they need to make a deal so we will not go over the cliff. i have been paying social some 30 all my life and -- social security all my life and i will need it when i retire. if they want to stop the deficit, they need to stop giving all aid to foreign countries. host: michael is in california on the republican line. caller: i just heard the democrats saying it does not
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seem they want to do anything but push everything down our throats. obama does not want to be bipartisan. he wants everything his way. it is not a one-way street. it is a two way street. liff.t go over the cres there are no budget cuts, nothing going the way the republicans wanted. the democrats want everything their way. host: another call from california from denise. denise is no longer with us. cleo from alabama, a democrat. caller: happy new year. i was just calling because i am so disappointed that they did not make a deal raising the taxes on everyone that made over $250,000 a year.
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i think that was a good solution. host: why? caller: it would reduce the deficit by $1 trillion. i think they also need to extend the unemployment benefits for those that are not working. barbara boxer said we gained $1.47 for every dollar we spend on food stamps. sounds like a good deal to me. host: reminder, the house gop is meeting renown in congress. we are waiting for them to finish. hopefully, the leadership will come out afterward and hold a press conference. the democrats did it earlier today and we brought that to you live. the house itself is in recess, subject to the call of the chair. they could come back at any point to debate the fiscal cliff issues and some smaller bills that they have on their agenda.
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we are just waiting for the house as well to come back. that is where we stand. this is live coverage on c-span on new year's day. etse are some more tweak regarding today's action. host: and is a republican in leonard, texas. what do you think about what is going on?
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caller: i am embarrassed by our senate and our congress. i think harry reid sat on a bill that was sent over six months ago or more that he never brought to the floor. whether you're a democrat or a republican, our government is spending as to bankruptcy. there will not be any money for entitlements and food stamps that that gentleman just talked about. if he thinks that is going to solve anything except push us further into debt, a a as a solution, it isn't. i vote we go over the cliff. i hope boehner and cantor hold the line. if the senate does not get their bill, a tough. obama has got to stop
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campaigning and start leading. host: a producer with fox news just sent this week. -- this tweet. now, david dreier is retiring. he will not be in congress come thursday. as rules committee chair, he has 35 more hours or so of being the chair, and then a new chair will be coming in. representative tom gray, a republican from georgia, tweets. ryan, california city, calif.,
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independent. caller: even if we pass this resolution and we do not go over the fiscal cliff, the tax hikes, even if they are on people who make $450,000 or less, that is what small businesses are. that would kill them. the capital gains taxes and raise. the bill is like a small book to read today, but i have gotten through the majority of it and it looks like they are just postponing the majority of the issues. we are not going to cut any spending. we're going to raise revenues. is defenseutting revenue, and that is not what the majority of spending goes to any more. it goes to entitlements.
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we cannot make up for entitlements with tax increases on the wealthy. there are not enough wealthy people in the country. host: what inspired you to read the actual bill pax? caller: i am very interested in politics. i am a young man, but i am very interested. it is my country that is being destroyed or vsafe. how old are you? caller: 14. host: how long is the bill?
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caller: 158 pages. host: is it written in a language you could understand? caller: i can understand it, but it is not something i think the common person could get through. host: was there anything in there that surprise you? caller: that the only a a cuts were in defense spending. host: ryan from california city, california. thank you. we appreciate your voice. a couple more tweets. a little earlier --again, we
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are waiting for the house leadership to come out of congress. we're waiting for the house to be back in session. we are essentially waiting for the house to take any action it takes. so far, they are talking, but they are not doing anything else because they have to wait for the house. all of this and live coverage on c-span. we will be following it all evening. a little earlier today, we talked with "washington times" politics editor stephen diamond on capitol hill. here is what he had to say.
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guest: they are in a break right now. they met for an hour and a half. they do not like the bill. the leaders did not seem to like the bill either. john boehner is inclined to let his members -- if two hundred 18 of them can get together on an amendment, he is inclined to let family -- to let them offer the and and and and try to pass that through. if they cannot get that number -- to offer that and try to pass that through. if they cannot get that number, they may just vote on the senate bill. earlier today, they were taking the temperature of where everyone was. they have done that. now they are going from there.
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host: when you talked to individual members as they were coming out, what were you hearing from them? are there a majority of republicans in favor of the senate bill right now? guest: know. i did not talk with enough to say for certain, but i would be shocked if that was the case. just about every single one i talked with, and i talked with a dozen or so, only one was in favor. most were in favor of trying to amend it or reject it outright. a couple of things that were particularly angry and to republicans, one was that the automatic spending cuts get postponed for two months. most republicans were excited to get real spending cuts for the first time in a generation of here, and the senate deal
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cancels' those with a promise of some future spending cuts and actually replaces some spending cuts with tax increases. that rubs a lot of republicans along re. specifics, the other thing that went into the meeting, the senate voted last night without final support from the office. the score came in as house republicans were going into the meeting this afternoon. that shows a net increase in spending. if you take the spending cuts that are there, it shows a net increase of about $330 billion over the next decade. a lot of republicans were upset at that. a number of them told me, we are waiting to see what we think the best. walking out was a big issue. it deepens the deficit. >> and the cbo was estimating $4
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trillion in added spending. mr. dinan, are there enough republicans would support the current senate bill, along with enough democrats? >> that is the question out there. i do not know an answer to that. i would say it would be close. gave thets thevote momentum. the time it spent out there was 12 hours. the things that have come out have pushed some of those republicans that might have been on the fence and the other direction. it is a good question. there is probably no answer to that. we will not know until that is actually the choice facing republicans. as of 9 at -- right now, it is more likely they get enough support to try to have an amendment.
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nancy pelosi was asking for this up or down vote. i would doubt that happens. it is more likely to be on a republican amendment and the house would have to reject that and that would be the statement they want to go back to the senate amendment. >> if that becomes the case, what is the senate's role? >> when harry reid close down the senate to this morning, he essentially sent them home and said when i came over here a few minutes ago, the senate was in session. there are of you a few -- very few senators around. harry reid said he suspected the next actual roll call book would be when the senate comes back at noon on thursday. he did not expect any roll-call vote before then. he thought it the bill comes back from the house, they
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probably have to pass that by unanimous consent. that is a signal they do not think they can bring their members back to 10. there will be a lot of pressure on the amendment. i imagine they might scramble to see if they can get folks to come back. it depends on what the amendment is or whether they have to reject that. we are less than 48 hours away from the end of this congress, not to mention we are over the edge of the cliff. >> when you expect the house to come back into session? >> they did not give a time. they said they were going to do more conversations. they are going to go back into -- the house is going to back into conference and then we will probably see floor action. will have to go through the rules committee on the sandy
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spending bill and on the fiscal cliff deal. there is a lot of procedural stuff that has to happen, even before we get to the floor. >> stephen dinan, when did you come into work? have you been there all night? >> i got home for about six hours. it has been a lot of long days. last year, i spent years in a hotel -- new years in a hotel. this year i spent it with my reporter friends. not where i anticipated being. >> politics editor for the washington times. i hope we can check in with you later this evening if we need to. >> anytime. host: we conducted that interview a few hours ago.
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back to our live coverage, a live shot of the u.s. capitol. you can see the light, and that means that the house is still in session and they are in recess of the to the call of the chair. the senate has gone out of session. lisa tweets, she is a reporter -- hope tomorrow will go well. so the senate is active session. they are not going to be around if the house has to do anything. they will not be in session. they will be back tomorrow, their last day of the 112th congress. the 113th congress begins on thursday. we want to go back to your calls, i hear your voice is on what is going on with the fiscal cliff. our next call is from esther in
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harrison, arkansas. democrat. caller: i do not know about this worry and concern. it seems like the congressmen and senators, they just want their way and yet the republicans do not seem to have learned the country spoke when they reelected obama. they are still trying to fight for what they want themselves. i wonder what this country's going to come to in the next election. i am worried about the democrat and republican party. we do not know what the changes would be. another thing is the billions of dollars they are spending overseas trying to fight the war over there. they are financing billions, i
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believe to understood, it is that expensive. lives are being lost. i know it sounds reasonable to some people. you take people that do not care to die, like a lot of those suicide bombers, you cannot get rid of all of the terrorists. they are a country that is mixed up. i am concerned for the world. poor people do not seem to get a chance. the wealthy need another million when we need another dollar. host: times in arkansas. a reporter with politico --
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john in kansas, republican. caller: hi, my comment is, i hope they pass the proposal so they can pass a sensible bill that addresses our national debt, and other legitimate concerns. and, we as citizens of america, and need to be responsible and we need to e-mail our president and congressman to tell them to negotiate, give-and-take. stop playing hardball and putting our nation at risk.
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host: that is john in kansas. as we mentioned, the senate is now out of session. being new year's day, a quick programming note, book tv has extended its time and it is on c-span2 right now if you would like to go there, if you are interested in book tv. again, we plan ahead, american history tv is all about american history. those two out there c-span channels are running different programs, if you're tired of the fiscal cliff, or need to do something different. right now, the house republicans are meeting in conference. they have not come out yet. discussing this issue. we will bring you their press conference, if and when the leadership holds a press conference. you can see that is the place in
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the capital, that is a reporter with cnn, right there with the microphones, and that is where the press conference will be held if the republican leadership comes out of their conference. here are some more tweets. tara says -- danielle says -- frist fir -- freedom first -- mrs. thomas in new hampshire. -- this is thomas in new hampshire.
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greg is in new york. caller: i wonder why we call it the fiscal cliff and how did they get this far. obama presented four budgets to the senate. his senate rejected them all, overwhelmingly. then they did not come up with their own budget. by law they are supposed to. then the speaker of the house, he sends a wish list to the senate, expecting them to act, which he knows they're not going to. it sounds to me they are all worried about themselves. they are all politicking for reelection. fiscal cliff, we need term limits to get these people out of there that have been in their 10, 20 years. they are not doing the job for us. host: chad from fox news.
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his most recent tweet -- ken is in fort lauderdale. >> happy new year. i just wanted to say that first of all this policy was created by the republicans in the george bush administration. however, it goes back in time. let's stick with that. the republicans need to recognize they should be back in their own past president. i would like to say that when two policies -- i am sorry, when the democrats and republicans came into place 400 years ago,
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maybe it is time to introduce a third party, so things do not get gridlocked like they are. thank you very much. host: gary in hollister. what would you like to say? >> my name is jerry, i may veteran. i am fed up with what our government does. we need to have a real tea party, not a fake tea party, like these republicans that let the taxpayers not pay their taxes and less the government -- let them go over the cliff. we are fed up with them. it is time americans put people in their letter concerned about citizens, not their pockets. that is what we need to do. host: some more tweets. pete --
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jill say s-- s: say tweets in -- mark tweets in -- this call is from sunrise beach, missouri. caller: i am calling to talk to you about all these republicans that are trying to blame all of this issue on obama when, if they would understand the
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constitution, they would know that any tax bill has to come from the house of representatives. john boehner is so inept, with eric cantor, he does -- is not capable of passing a bill. he tried it and had to pull it off the floor. wasn't unable to do with the constitution tells him to do. he then asks that the senate makes a bill to vote on. the senate passed a bill and they brought it in with 89 votes and then they turn around and now he is talking about wanting to an amendment. he is so scared of eric cantor. that is the situation we are in. host: the house the bell system has gone off. these alert members there is a vote. there is at least about 15 minutes before the house comes into session. it is currently in recess, subject to the call of the chair. the bells have gone off. it looks like they will be coming back into session.
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while we are waiting for that, we want to show you the democratic house leadership press conference that was held at two hours ago. here it is. but also gave us a thoughtful and detailed explanation of what has gone on and how it was that he and the president, working with the republican leaders in both houses, were able to come
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together on this compromise. we first want to say thank you to the vice president for being so gracious. and so frank in his conversation in explaining, as much as he could, about what has transpired over the last several weeks. we are now waiting to hear from our republican colleagues whether or not they want to do what the senate did in a very bipartisan fashion and give the american people an opportunity to have a vote. there are people throughout this country who might look at this still and love it. some might take it. some may not understand it. but we believe every american should have the right to vote in the people's house. we are hoping the house will respect the wishes of the american public and let the representatives' vote up or down on that legislation. let me turn now to our leader,
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nancy pelosi. >> thank you very much. last night, the senate -- it was early this morning. the senate voted in a bipartisan way, and 89 votes in favor, of the compromise legislation. that was historic. that legislation was sent over to the house. up until now, our speaker has said when the senate acts, we will have a vote in the house. that is what he said. that is what we expect. that is what the american people deserve. we look forward now, as we go forward, to see what the timing will be for a straight, and poured down vote. it passed 89-8 in the united states senate. today we have the privilege of hearing from the vice president.
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he talked about the legislation and what lies ahead in it -- difficult negotiations as we go forward. we had a frank discussion in that regard. right now, are members are continuing to review the legislation, weighing the pros and cons, and weighing the equities of not going over the cliff. we are all very eager to see the forms that the republican leadership will put onto the floor today. i think we have made gigantic progress. i hope we can have a bipartisan agreement as we go forward. as i said, are members are making decisions now when we look forward to hearing from the republicans. a person who will know best what our numbers are, are distinguished master counter, mr. --
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>> the 112th congress has 48 hours left to go. this congress, unfortunately, has been most known for an unwillingness to compromise. an unwillingness to come together to act on behalf of the american people. today is january 1. taxes will be going out on everybody in america. if we do not act. those who rely on unemployment, and millions of americans, to make sure they can support themselves and their families. if we do not act, they will be at risk. joe biden worked hard to come to a compromise. by definition, a compromise has elements in it that each party does not like.
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but, by definition, it has things in it that each party should like. the speaker said if the -- he would put it on the floor for a vote. we expect that to happen. we think that is in the interest of the american people. we hope that our colleagues on the other side of the aisle can reach a compromise. our members are reviewing the specifics of the compromise that has been reached to determine whether they can support that compromise. willopeful this congress act not only on this compromise but i am also very helpful, and would expect, we would provide the emergency assistance needed for the victims of hurricane sandy. worst the country's storms in history against the
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northeast. i am hopeful we will be able to move on both of these issues and that we will have members on both sides, who perhaps will not agree, but hopefully we will have members who will agree and we can act as the american people expect us. >> we will hear from the incoming vice chair. >> i will be very brief. i think the difference between a divided government and dysfunctional government is the willingness to compromise. we saw that in the senate, as nancy pelosi and mr. hoyer have said. that means deciding whether it it helps move the country forward. we are hopeful that republicans on the house will do as democrats and republicans did on the senate.
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decide at the end of the day not everybody gets 100% of what they want. democracy means a willingness to come together for the good of the country. that is what compromise is all about, especially in an era of divided government. our members are taking a look at the bill. we would ask our colleagues to bear in mind the good of the country as they also weigh all of the equities. with that, i turned over to the vice chairman of our caucus. >> i will just add, we appreciate the vice-president coming to the caucus today in a straightforward way, explaining the process of the negotiation and why we are where we are at today. i think the time for discussion is coming to an end and it will
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be time for us to vote soon. all of this will have been for naught. if we do not come and have a vote. that is what the american people deserve and expect out of this process. we can either move forward in a bipartisan way, hand in hand to avert the fiscal cliff, or our colleagues will help lead us. we hope that is not the case. >> questions. >> can i ask, what are your spies telling you how it is going? you have to count heads with them as well. >> i am not stipulating to any characterization of any information we have received from our friends in the press. [laughter] i really have no idea.
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>> what are you hearing from the other side? >> i think your question is better addressed to the republicans coming out of the conference. we just came out of hours. we know what you tell us. >> we have not had an opportunity to talk to their leadership. >> you said you would prefer a straight up or down vote. is that because of the time or because this was brokered by the vice president? >> it was a bill that was passed in the united states senate 89- 8. tell me when you have had that on a measure as controversial as this. >> they have problems to -- without one. >> i hope we do not have a re- enactment with act where they painted themselves in the extreme of not wanting to find
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compromise and a solution. let's be optimistic. favorhope they decide in of the country as we go forward. the issue of whether we have an up or down vote should not be a question. when the senate acted, we would have a vote. we want to have that vote. we look forward to what the timing is. this is all about time and it is about time we brought this to the floor. it has only been a matter of a couple of mons since the election, eight weeks. in that time, we have been pushed into a new year. it is long overdue for us to have the solution to remove all doubt as to how we go, what comes next, for our country.
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we expect the american people deserve an up or down vote on what was passed. >> if there is an up or down vote, how many would you have? >> that is a subject that would be talking about right now. >> members are considering the legislation, they just heard from them vice-president, we will find that -- >> if you're saying you want bipartisanship, don't you have to say you are willing to support this legislation? >> i do not think there is any doubt. she asked me for the number and i do not have the number. i can tell you we will have a bipartisan vote. >> when will the start whipping? host: that was about 3:00 p.m.
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this afternoon, that press conference was held. the republicans did not hold one this afternoon. however, the house of representatives will be coming into session in a few minutes. according to the republican leadership, there's going to be a series of three votes. some of the issues they debated during the year, but not the fiscal cliff issue at this point. they will be voting on the congressional pay freeze, on an alaska bill, and a bill called the dry wall safety act of 2012. that is what is coming up in just a few minutes in the house. at the bottom of this note is from the senate leadership, they wrote "there will be more of those series in the house today, possibly late until the evening. " that is where they have left wiggle room for any potential legislative action on any fiscal
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cliff bills. molly hooper, house to vote tonight. voites, if they for the spending amendment, the cuts amendment. per gop source. some other tweets -- dan say: -- says -- are you better off --
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dennis says -- brook says -- e following order. h.r. 6726 by the yeas and nays. the senate amendment to h.r. 443 de novo. and the senate amendment to 4212 de novo. the first electronic vote will be conducted as a 15-minute vote. remaining electronic votes will be conducted as five-minute votes. vote vote -- the unfinished
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business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from california, mr. issa, on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 6726, a bill to prevent the 2013 pay adjustment for members of congress and persons holding other offices or positions in the sfral government from being made -- federal government from being made. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 287, the nays are 129. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection, the the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the speaker pro tempore: the unfinished business is question on suspending the rules and concurring in senate amendment h.r. 44 , which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: an act to provide for the conveyance of certain properties in the united states to the association located in alaska.
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the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and concur in the senate amendment. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. >> mr. speaker, i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, yeas and nays are requested. members will record their votes by electronic device. , this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 410, the nays are five. 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the senate amendment is agreed to and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the unfinished business is the question on suspending the rules and concurring in the senate amendment, h.r. 4212, in which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: h.r. 4212, an act to prevent the introduction to commerce of unsafe drywall to make sure that manufacturers of drywall are identifiable to make sure that problematic drywall removed from homes is not use and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and concur in the senate amendment. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
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the gentleman from washington. mr. hastings: mr. speaker, i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman ask for a recorded vote? does the gentleman ask for a recorded vote? mr. hastings: yes. the speaker pro tempore: a recorded vote is requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five minute th vote -- this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 378, the nays are 37. 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the senate amendment is agreed to and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the chair lays before the house a communication.
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the clerk: the honorable the speaker, house of representatives, sir, pursuant to the commission -- permission granted in clause 2h of rule 2 of the rules of the u.s. house of representatives the clerk received the following message from the secretary of the senate on january 1, 2013, at 6:17 p.m., that the senate passed without amendment h.r. 4365, that the senate agreed to, without amendment, house con current resolution 147. signed, sincerely, karen l. haas. spero: pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the -- the house
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there had been some talk about amending the senate bill but that could not get the 218 votes needed for a majority to pass. this is just what we are hearing from different media sources. as we continue our coverage, we want to hear from you. the tweets are coming and approximately nearly 1000 an hour. it is relatively fascinating to watch the progression.
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i don't think we have ever seen it this quick before, but we want to go through some of these as we get ready to take your phone calls. this is righteous veteran. the first call up during this segment of open phones comes from turcotte -- from detroit,
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frank, democrat. >> of this land to make a quick comment on the deficit issue. if you look at it historically, the present government has always increased in size. our deficit has always increased. without any means of paying for the drug -- prescription drug plan, now they want to blame the democrats. it is a congress that created the spending in the first place, so this is money they have already spent. so why do they come back and pretend this is something that is out of hand? the deficit has already gone up on spending have already approved. i think we really need to look at what comes out of washington.
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spending has never been under control. as long as the government is stable, our debt is not really that important. the talk about what we are going to leave for our children and grandkids, while we let our roads fall apart. we do nothing for the future of this country, and they use that all the time to say we cannot leave this huge deficit for our kids and grandkids. at the same time you are cutting pell grants, you are cutting education and research. you are allowing the country to fall apart. we ask the citizens of this country need to look beneath the rhetoric and do little research and we will find out that what the republican party is really doing is constantly giving us a snow job. that is my comment. >> that is frank in detroit. this is mike in pomeroy, ohio,
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republican. >> thanks for taking my call. i did want to say i am very disappointed at what is going on here. i have been paying into social security for 40 years. i don't think that is an entitlement. i paid into it. i will say this, i have been a republican the biggest part of my life, and i will never, ever vote republican again as far as big as long as i live. >> here are some more tweets that we have received.
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this is a tweet that we received from gina. if you heard brian earlier, he is 14 years old. he has read the bill and had some opinions on it as well. mike in little creek, california, independent line. what are your thoughts about this fiscal cliff process? >> my first reflection on this is that we seem to have a clear divide across partisan politics, when the actual divide is one of philosophy. do you want a larger government,
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or do you want a smaller government? do you want federalism, or do you want a republic. my ambition is to have a republic to give all that much power as possible to the state governments. let's get rid of this big federal oversight, this incredible deficit that has arisen as the federal government's has tried to assume almost a maoist implementation of their desires across the broad population. let the localities decide for themselves. it may be rather obvious. you cannot entertain everybody's desire to grab money from the federal purse, because that federal purse is the public purse, and that public purse reside across all elements of
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society, not just a national enterprise. >> that was miking california. the c-span capital producer also tweets regular updates. here is one she just sent out. that is what we just witnessed, those three votes, and they went right back into recess. what she meant was they wanted to see who was in the house, who was voting, so they could do some serious vote counting. boskin stewart, florida -- bob in florida, democrat. >> i am disgusted that i was watching last not until there was no more news out of washington to watch on our
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magnificent, publicly owned tv stations. airwaves, excuse me. i cannot understand what democrats and republicans cannot sit down and make a deal, and bring us not just out of a fiscal hole, but consolidate a plan that would bring us to fiscal sensibility. thank you. >> thank you for calling in. nick in west bloomfield, michigan. >> have the new year. my prediction is that the house will not pass the senate bill, and to get right down to it, the country is broke. the republicans caused this in
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eight years under the bush administration. we killed 2 million iraqis for oil. shame on america. no one talks about this. now we are broke financially, and everything is made in china. >> that wozniak in michigan. a fox news producer on capitol hill. that is an update from chad. mark, west palm beach florida, a democrat.
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>> if you were watching "meet the press" recently, david vitter was interviewing the president and he asked why no one could ever say yes to the president of the united states. the answer is, there is a group of republicans, probably about 40 or 50 of them, still living in the past and simply cannot come to grips that there is an african-american president in the white house. it is not about policy, because at this point, a compromise could be reached, but they simply have to say no because they cannot accept that an african-american families sit in the white house. i can understand it from their history, every day these people wake up and they would rather have a needle stuck in their eye than see that. >> that was marked in florida,
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and this is mimi in dayton, ohio, republican line. >> i have just recently gotten interested in politics. i have a question for you. i heard that the price of milk could possibly double. is that true for other commodities, too? to mislead you or anything. i don't know anything about that, but the milk issue was included in the senate bill. there was an ag portion passed in the senate bill that would prevent the so-called milk cliff. i don't know about the other commodities. >> thank you so much. >> we will move on to jeff in indiana, independent. >> i think the biggest problem we need to look at is getting
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some of these districts are redrawn in some of the state's, however they do it. the republicans had set up so they don't have to compromise because they don't have to worry about being challenged in the general election. i think the caller from florida, it does not matter if he is black or not. it is just icing on the cake for some of these guys. redistricting is very important, i think. >> the next caller is from union city, ohio, a democrat. [indiscernible] >> we are one nation together here and we all need to pull together and work together as one country. we need to come up with a
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solution, the poor, the rich, and the middle-class. we are all one nation under god and we need to come together. >> another tweak that has come out. so if the rules committee does anything, then the house can still vote on any legislative action tonight. more tweets, this is from adrian. and this is from michael.
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paul, plano, texas, republican. >> first-time caller. there has only been one person not hurt in the last hour or so that is really qualified to comment on this bill, and that was the 14-year-old. it would be nice if your screeners would ask each person calling it they would draft the bill. >> that 14-year-old was pretty impressive. i enjoyed talking to him. >> it was succinct and did a good job. >> have you been watching this all day? >> no. >> just sitting in tonight? >> i.t. and then about a half- hour before you interviewed the young man. >> -- itunes en about a half- hour before you interview the
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young man. -- i tuned in. >> i don't understand why these guys cannot get their act together. to me, they are more worried about themselves than what the good of the country is. i am independent for a reason. these republicans and democrats -- i was a democrat my whole life. i switched parties for the simple fact that both have ideas that i support and ideas i do not support. they went on and on about raising taxes for the upper class. understand, if we keep falling off a cliff, we will have tax raises on everybody. i don't understand why they cannot put their personal differences -- and i hope the voters hold them accountable. >> thank you for calling in this evening.
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first is this tweet from jennifer. this is from ian. tevin says -- by the way, the senate has announced that they will be back in session tomorrow at noon. if anything happens in the house
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tonight, if the senate needs to do any thing, they will be in session tomorrow. this is the current 100 well congress. this congress goes away at noon -- but current 112th congress. it goes away at noon when the 113th congress gets sworn in. everything starts fresh. any legislation that has not passed or has not been acted on its debt, essentially, and has to be reintroduced and looked at and voted on. the new congress comes in on thursday at noon, but the senate will be in, the 112th congress sent will be in tomorrow at noon. the current house is in recess, subject to the call of the chair. when they come out of there, we will be live with that coverage as they continued into the evening. several reporters and some
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leadership aides are predicting a late night for the house. they have some other votes and maybe even a vote on hurricane sandy assistance coming up as well. when the house came in originally today at noon, a lot of the members went down to the floor to give what they call 1- minute court short speeches about any topic they want. the fiscal cliff obviously was the main topic. here are some of those speeches from noon today. >> the people that do all the complaining about spending, the record clearly shows -- to wars that took a trillion dollars out of the american economy. unfunded tax cuts created the worst economy in 60 years as a prescription program that costs $730 billion over the next 10 years.
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raising the debt ceiling authorizes you to pay back the money you have already spent. republicans in this house voted for and have a moral obligation to repay that money. mr. speaker, the american economy needs to grow much more than the projected 2% for 2013. 2% growth is not enough to sustain the current level of employment. the american economy needs robust growth of 3%-4%. we need to do nation-building, not in afghanistan or iraq, but at home, here in america. i yield back the balance of my time. the gentleman from virginia is
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recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, what we know with certainty about the bill which passed the senate? we know it has bipartisan support. that is encouraging. i am a republican that makes the point that revenues must rise. it would surely help our economy. yet we also know with certainty that it fails to address the threat facing our country, uncontrolled spending. it fails to reflect the balanced approach that was advocated by our president. we find ourself with a bill that reflects the spirit that invades this town. the time to confront our spending addiction is not now, it is later. we will do the right thing then. leaders in washington continue to overpromise. they are like salespeople who tell customers they can pay -- they can have a $30,000 car but only paid $18,000 for it.
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who does not like that deal? the cost will be paid by their children, the next generation of americans. there is a better way forward for americans. let's find it. i yield back. >> we have heard from a colleague on my side that sounds like he is not going to vote from this position, and we have heard from the other side. i am going to vote for it. it is sugar and spice and everything nice. i believe our president and our vice-president know what they can get and negotiate a deal with the republican side in the sense that might pass the house as well. they know what our country needs. my district cannot afford to wait a few days and let the stock market godown 300 points if we do not get together and do
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something. people in my district need unemployment compensation and the need to know that will have that earned income tax credit, college credit. it is important that we move this country moving in the right direction, away from another recession. the poor but june is not just on our bills but what we are as -- e pluribus unum is not just on our build but what we are. it is a deal i am going to support and i hope my colleagues will resolve to give the president and vice president the benefit of the doubt as the year goes on, as i do today. >> the gentleman from texas is recognized for one minute. >> last night was the first time in my life that i have sat at my desk as we went into a new year, but it gave me a chance to contemplate what we are about.
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we are going into a new year as the first generation who did not ask the question, what can we do, what can we sacrificed to make future generations have a better life than we have? instead, we asked, how much can we eke up taxes a little bit so that we can keep spending 58 cents to get a dollar's worth of wasteful, bloated government, so that our children and grandchildren can pay 42 cents of every dollar that we waste on ourselves. is there any way to start the new year? we are taking up a bill that will not do anything to cut spending. i am embarrassed for this generation. the future generations deserve better. i yield back. >> those speeches from the house floor or from about noon today. we are back live here on c-span
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, the first day of january, 2013, as the house of representatives looks at fiscal cliff legislation and potentially some different options there. they are apparently in recess, subject to the call of the chair. waiting for them to come back, and obviously we will go back to that live. the senate has adjourned for the evening. they will be back tomorrow during the day. that is the current schedule. we will put the numbers up on the screen if you would like to dial in and join our conversation this evening as we await potential action by the house rules committee. pittsburg, democrat, what are your thoughts? >> how does want to say i have been a democrat all my life, and my parents, also.
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we voted the republican congress in their. even some democrats are asking the president, they thought he was doing a bad job. we are asking them, what do you think is going to happen? that is what i have to say. but charles in new mexico, republican line. you are on c-span, charles. >> i just have to quit commons. -- two quick comments. we got into a bind and had to do without electricity for three months. now we are back on track and everything is fine. as far as the debt ceiling, if i walked into the bank and said i
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really cannot afford to pay my loans, can you raise my limit? they would let -- they would laugh me out of the bank. where are we as a country? >> that is charles in new mexico. several hundred more tweets have come in since we last looked at these.
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lance in california on the independent line. you are on the air. >> thank you for taking my call. i just wanted to say that congress is dealing with a president who has family in values, with high morals. he doesn't care about the cost, he cares about the people. that is something they don't get, they don't understand, and they are not going to get it. thank you very much. >> cleveland, ohio, another independent. >> my comments is about the oath of office that these guys take when they get elected. they are supposed to do what is best for the people, not for the party, whether it is democrat, republican, whatever. the republicans got a good push with reagan when he started
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busting unions and raided the social security surplus. then clinton comes along and we have a surplus. bush comes along, we live in fear for eight years. all the spending in afghanistan, a rack, and iran, and nothing was said there. then the democrats had the congress, that everything in obama's first term and had no back on. they just went ahead and let the republicans push them around. they forgot to put them there, as far as the unions, the middle-class. they are not protecting these unions and passing legislation to help them. what is happening is, now you've got what just happened in michigan, right to work. this is not about right to work, it is about busting unions. everyone of those red states
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have a republican governor who have been pushing this issue and is getting to the point where i think the only thing that will stop all this bickering between parties is term limits. if a president can only serve two terms, then a congressman, senator, can only serve the same amount of terms, and then we will not have this power struggle as far as the republicans against the democrats, because they better do their job because they have a limited amount of time, or they are out. >> mike o'brien of nbc has this week. -- this tweet. that is the spending amendment that some republicans had wanted to. again, we don't know whether that amendment will be coming
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up for the rules committee to consider or if it will be a senate bill that will bring to the house floor or not. it is still little bit up in the air. don in maryland, a democrat. you are on the air. >> i think the republicans and democrats have to grow up and come together. if they don't, i think in 2014 they are going to lose their job and we will put somebody else in the position to get the job done. thank you. >> mark, henderson, north carolina, on the republican line. what are your thoughts on what is happening today? >> happy new year, first off. let's start back from the beginning, when the bush tax cuts took place. there were not enough votes, so that is why we are facing this fiscal cliff right now. nancy pelosi, harry reid, for six years they knew this was
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coming. last term of president obama, there was no budget passed. nobody is talking, the liberal media is not talking. they are hiding the bills that were passed in the house to be tabled and never brought up and never be accountable for. i hold the republicans accountable, too, because they did not step up to the mike and point the finger towards the blame. i have another question to ask. obama asked for complete congressional powers about being able to pull up and give any amount of money that he wanted, taking those powers away from the house. i think that is completely ludicrous. as far as the last caller asking out the democrats and republicans, that me see, if the democrats put a bill together and the republicans don't vote for it, they are mad at it, but
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if the republicans put a bill and let's say cave to the democrats, there is no bipartisan. i have never seen the democrats actually cave and take care of the fiscal cliff in the amount of debt that we have is completely crazy to me. >> that is marked in north carolina. back to the tweets.
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peak in louisiana on the democrats' line. you are on c-span. >> i wanted to say that it seems that neither party wants to come up with tax cuts, anything to raise revenue by taxes, tax cuts. anything they say is going to hurt somebody, and that will be less of boats for them. i agree with the term limits. i believe we should drop the gerrymandering by getting rid of the party affiliations when you fill out your voter registration. if you don't have a party affiliation, they cannot tell who you are going to vote for.
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thank you for taking my call. >> thank you for calling in this evening. roger from orlando, please go ahead, republican. >> i just want to say we will never get up this fiscal mess until the democrats understand that you cannot spend more money than you have. families have to live with a so does the country. send it back to the senate's and their them not to pass it, and say happy new year. kreps philip and alabama, independent line. good evening -- philip in alabama. >> the people of this country have created this mess we are in. we are the ones that elected yahoos who are sitting there right now, not
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accomplishing one thing. we should have stayed out of iraq. iraq would have kept iran in check right now. i agree with afghanistan, but we need to take a hard look at the people we put up there, because right now, the people we put up there now, they don't need to be up there. have a good night. >> that was fill up in alabama. -- philip in alabama. that is some of the tweets.
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if you want to follow the discussion you can go to #fis calcliff. today, the senate was in session for a while. they did not take any votes. they were kind of waiting on the house, essentially. a lot of the senators spoke about the fiscal cliff issue. here is the republican from wyoming and what he had to say. >> today we are busy patting ourselves on the back for avoiding the fiscal cliff. much't know how congratulation we ought to have for that. yesterday i was buying some groceries, and the guy at the checkout stand had no idea who i was, and should not have. he said, what is going on on capitol hill? what are those people doing? we ought to fire everybody in
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congress. they cannot get their work done. we have to get our work done. they don't have to get their work done. he made a good point. it is down to the level of gross restore check out people, and i suspect other levels than that. people are tuned into the news media or entertainment media. they call it the fiscal cliff, so that it appears to be in niagara falls with money running over it. more of a gradual slope, but we have to stop this downward slope that we are on. it is important that we do that. this is the body that can do that. congress can do that. we do a war of words around here, this protecting the ridgc.
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h the problem goes into the definition of rich, and that is a hard one to explain. any attempt that looks like that goes back to that's the key word, rich, which nobody is trying to protect. i used to be in business, i was a small businessman. i know that at the end of the year, the business would show a profit. unfortunately, we could not take the money out of the business if we were going to continue to grow the business. if we were going to put more people on, that meant we need to have more product, more investment in the business. so the money that we could have taken out to show as profit actually went back into the business. how come we have so little money when we make so much money? that is a position that a lot of
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the small businesses are in or around the country. they are having to put their money back into it. i understand when people say protect the ridge, whatever the amount comes out to be, but the person working in that business making $30,000, and they are making $50,000, we really ought to tax them. it is a fairness issue. but when it gets the point of what their take home is, it is a lot different. it looks really good on paper, but the money they get to take out is significantly less than that. that is where the divide came up on trying to solve this problem. could it have been solved? yes, it could have been solved. what we need to do around this institution is start legislating and stop dealmaking.
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we are a legislative body. you cannot have 100 people involved in a deal. and consequently, we don't. we have a group of two, or group of four or six or eight, or maybe as many as 12, getting together, putting together some kind of comprehensive package to put before this body. those who are not in the group are kind of insulted by it. they don't make a big deal out of it because it becomes a tradition. but it is not help it is supposed to work. i have been there. i have gotten to legislate. it is one of the privileges of this country. the main person i legislated with what senator kennedy. senator kennedy was considered one of the most liberal people in the senate. i have always been considered one of the most conservative people in the senate. but we were able to work together and get 38 bills out of
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committee and through this body. the worst boat we ever got was 15 votes against. how did we do that? we did not try to solve the world's problems all in one bill. we took an issue at a time, and we found common ground. we found what we could agree on, and that was usually about 80% of the whole issue. 80%, that's pretty good. we worked on issues that had been around here 10, 12, 15 years without passing. coming to the floor numerous times. what we mainly had to do was sit down with the stakeholders who were intensely interested in the bill, who had been lobbying on that bill for years and years and years. we would say to them, this is what we can get. this is what we have to leave out. it was not compromise. compromise is when you give up
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half of what you believe in and i give up half of what i believe in, and we wind up with something that neither of us believe in. but common ground happens. there is common ground on every one of these issues. that is what we've got to find. the common ground. so we would meet with the stakeholders and they would say no, you are leaving out the most important part of the whole bill. this is what we really want. with senator kennedy's constituency, he would have to make this comment, and i would have to make the comment with mine. that would say we have been working on it for 10 years. i would say, how much have you gotten? nothing. here is what we can get for you. isn't this better than nothing? the light would come on. they would say that would be good progress. and then they would quit pushing against us and they would get against us and they would get with us

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